Special to The Swellesley Report courtesy of the Wellesley High School Bradford and Parents of Performing Students (POPS). This is one in a series of POPS Senior Profiles we’ll be publishing.
Izzy Pavano ’23 has been involved in music for practically her entire life. At the age of four, she started playing piano, and as she had gotten older, she has involved herself more and more with different types of music. She began singing in sixth grade in the chorus at Wellesley Middle School. Now at the high school, she has studied vocal music for all four years.
“During my freshman and sophomore years, I was in Concert Choir at the high school. After that I auditioned for a select ensemble and was in the Keynote Singers my junior year. I currently sing in Rice Street, the high school’s jazz choir.” said Pavano.
Outside of school, Pavano has also participated in extracurricular a cappella during her junior and senior years. She is the business leader of Inchordination A Cappella, meaning she helps manage the group and books gigs. She has found this experience particularly rewarding because of the collaboration with the other high school a cappella leaders, both from her own group and the three others.
“Being a leader of an a cappella group is no easy feat, but the support I feel from my fellow leaders makes the leadership role nothing but an honor. Even though the four groups can occasionally get competitive with one another during our soccer tournament called acasoccer, at the end of the day we are each other’s biggest cheerleaders and we couldn’t be more proud of the work each group does,” she said.
Pavano’s involvement with the Choral department at the high school goes beyond what audience members see at a concert, however. What has made Pavano’s experience so special has been the people and community she was welcomed into as an underclassman, and that she now fosters as a leader and a choral intensive student. Pavano hosted the Inchordination group at her house for a dinner, providing a fun experience for singers from all grades.
Many of Pavano’s leadership skills in the Choral department came from last year’s seniors, the class of 2022, who were integral to keeping the choral program alive during the pandemic. One of Pavano’s most memorable experiences at the high school was singing a medley from the musical Rent at the spring concert last year because it was the last concert for the class of 2022.
“We had an exceptional group of seniors that year who had truly given their all to our program. The concert was a wonderful way to end the year with them, and while we were all so sad to lose them, we were so happy to have had such a phenomenal year with them.” said Pavano.
Inchordination A Cappella also has a signature move, as Pavano calls it, of dropping their heads at the end of their last song as the crowd bursts into applause. This year, at the Acatober concert, Pavano got to share that moment with someone very special to her: her younger sister, Sophia Pavano ’26. It was especially sweet because of all the hard work she had put into the concert as a choral intensive student and a leader of Inchordination.
“Hearing the crowd’s reaction to our set while being cheered on by the other a cappella groups was such a rewarding feeling and something I felt extremely proud of as a leader of our group,” she said.
Outside of an impressive repertoire of choral achievements, teachers and peers describe Pavano as a kind and welcoming leader who makes all feel welcome in the choral community.
“Izzy is a dedicated member of our performing arts community that puts significant thought and action to developing our overall Performing Arts Department. Her focus, energy, and humor positively impacts others,” said Dr. Kevin McDonald, the choral director at the high school.
Izzy also feels incredibly lucky that the performing arts is such a vibrant community at the high school, and that she gets to learn from many other talented students as well as an incredible teacher in Dr. McDonald.
“Dr. McDonald makes it so obvious how much he cares about Wellesley’s singers and our success. He is a strong reminder to me to pursue what both makes me happy and also brings joy to others,” said Pavano. “Above all, the most admirable quality about our choir department is the people in it. Every single singer in the department is so passionate about what we do and that positive energy is contagious.”
Although Pavano does not intend on pursuing a music degree in college, music will definitely remain a part of her life. Pavano plans to attend Middlebury College starting in February 2024 after taking a gap semester. She hopes to join an a cappella group in college and teach piano to local students, as she has done in Wellesley. Her kindness and upbeat energy will certainly remain prominent in the program after she graduates in the spring.
Article written by WHS Bradford’s Caroline Thornton ’23.